Tom Hanks has been in Toronto, supporting A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood, his film about Mr. Rogers, which premiered at TIFF on Sunday night, but that’s not all the Academy Award winner was doing—he was also making dreams come true.
A coffee house in the Leslieville area of the city had been campaigning since last week to get Hanks to drop by for a visit. And the actor clearly got wind of it—maybe the active Twitter user saw the hashtag #tomneedsgrinder—because Grinder Coffee got quite the surprise on Friday night when Hanks showed up as they were closing.
“He found us funny and he freakin came!!,” read the caption on Grinder’s Instagram account, along with photos of Hanks with mug and cardboard cutout of himself firmly in hand. And since Joelle Murray, the owner of the shop, had already gone home, that left staffer Tony to tend to Tom’s coffee needs. Grinder thanked Hanks for visiting and “giving some love back to a small independent coffee shop” then proceeded to throw some shade Idris Elba’s way on their IG page. (More on that in a moment.)
View this post on Instagram
Day 7.5 of the #tomneedsgrinder campaign. New # : #tomneededgrinder. He found us funny and he freakin came!! Sorry for the pics, it seems that he came at closing time when Tony was mopping up, sadly Joelle was at home. However she had a very nice chat with Tom on the phone. Thank you @tomhanks for taking time at #tiff to come visit us. We appreciate you giving some #love back to a small independent coffee shop who truly admires yah! Really kind of you 🤗😍😘 @idriselba now that is how you do it! Boom! @tomhanks we have awesome coffee WHEN we are open. #tiff2019 #lovethisguy #tomhanks #Toronto #buylocal #smallbuisnesslife
Hanks was also spotted walking in the area, as he stopped to chat and take pics with fans, including an adorable baby. It was all enough for Hanks to take back his Nicest Guy in Hollywood title. Remember, Grinder is the same coffee shop Ryan Gosling visited during last year’s TIFF and the owners thanked him by giving him the ultimate compliment: “What a gracious well brought up Canadian boy.” That he is. Unlike Englishman, Elba. In 2017, for the cafe’s first celeb campaign they tried to woo Idris—and he either didn’t get the message or had a schedule that didn’t allow him to get out of the downtown core.
The folks at Grinder may still be bitter about Elba but a visit from Hanks (and Gosling) probably helps to ease the pain. Even if, after all the campaigning, Joelle only got a phone call.
And just when you didn’t think you could love Hanks any more, Tom decided to spread some joy on the red carpet at TIFF. Aside from signing autographs and posing for selfies, he also led the crowd—all wearing Mr. Rogers’ signature red cardigan—in a sing-along of “Won’t You Be My Neighbor?” because he’s awesome like that.
Tom, move to Toronto, please, and really be our neighbour.